He’s responding to Limbaugh’s criticism on the air yesterday and again last night on Fox News denying Huck the imprimatur of Reagan Republican. Pay careful attention to his credentials here; you’ll be hearing them repeated a lot, including by Rush Limbaugh himself, if Huck somehow sails through to the nomination and we’re stuck backing this guy.

Submitted for your approval this morning: “Unorthodox” conservatives David Brooks and Andrew Sullivan joining Huck’s own campaign team in downplaying the evangelical factor in his victory, despite the astonishing informal survey conducted by the Times showing more than 80% of Huck’s caucus-goers professing to be such. In Brooks’s case, it’s a paradigm-shifting economic populism that won the day; in Sullivan’s case, it was “hope,” an elegant sidestep past Huck’s “Christian leader” demagoguery, his wondering aloud about the finer points of Mormon theology, and his assertion that the power of prayer had accounted for his rise in the polls. It’s amazing how smoothly “Christianism” goes down when it’s deployed against the GOP establishment Sullivan loathes so much, isn’t it?

Read Peggy Noonan for a shrewder (and not unsympathetic) take on Huckabee. Oh, and Andrew Stuttaford, too. He’s sort of a conservative of doubt, to coin a phrase.

Update (Bryan): Here’s audio of Rush’s phone call on Fox last night after Huckabee’s win. It’s in two parts.

Part 2.

Update: At long last, Sully and James Dobson are on the same side. Dobson’s take is in line with Peggy Noonan’s, although I suppose Huck’s win has a certain Rorschach aspect to it. You’ll see in it whatever you want (or don’t want) to see.